White water rafting guide, business owner, lover of life.
When you love your job so much you buy into the business, you know you’re hooked for life. That’s what happened to Roderic Rees, white water rafting guide, business owner and lover of life. You can spot him in the pictures above and below at work having the most fun!
Roderic, affectionately known as Roddy, loves sharing our rivers and rain forests with people from all over the world. He’s passionate about protecting our natural assets and way of life. He believes conservation starts with education. By providing guests with an awesome time, they will engage with the environment which builds awareness, connection and a desire to help protect it.
Roddy’s rafting tips
The Rooster Tail Rapids are Roddy’s favourite section of the Barron River. Cairns is one of the few places to offer white water rafting all year round. This is thanks to the Barron River hydroelectric station which has a regular, daily water release creating a grade 3 river system for rafting. What does this mean? It’s good fun with some nice drops, high waves and broken water. It’s perfect (and safe) for people of all ages, from 12 to 80.
Roddy knows Foaming Fury inside out. From an interview to be a Rafting Guide nine years ago, Roddy cross trained to become a Tour Guide, then Rafting Supervisor, Operations Manager, General Manager and now Co-Owner. Foaming Fury has an international reputation for its quality River Guide Training program, with many of its graduates going on to be guides around the world. It’s a lifestyle profession, attracting passionate people who enjoy living life just like Roddy.
How did you turn your passion into a lifestyle?
Roddy met wife Chelsea when she came on a Foaming Fury expedition. He credits her as being the motivation behind his decision to buy into the business.
‘She gave me the kick up the bum I needed’, he laughs. ‘I loved what I was doing and wanted to grow things from there. So I worked hard and spoke to the owner about buying into the company. We formulated a succession plan and in three month’s time I take over reigns completely as sole director of Foaming Fury, Active Tropics Explorer and Waterfall Wanderers’, he says, like a man who still can’t believe he gets to go white water rafting for a living!
Today Roddy’s work life has a bit of everything. ‘I still like to get on the rafts, to keep my finger on the pulse and provide hands-on training, but I’m also running the business day to day, which includes sales and marketing and community engagement’. Roddy is snapped here with Lisa Morellini, Foaming Fury’s Sales and Marketing representative getting ready for the 2015 Port Douglas Carnivale grand parade.
Work & life balance
Even when he’s not working, Roddy loves being on the water. Fishing is his time to de-stress. Although coral trout are his favourite fish to catch and eat, Roddy also loves spending time casting for barramundi at Lake Tinaroo. This 93cm beauty was caught and released during the FNQ (Facebook) Fishing Group competition earlier this year.
What do you love most about Tropical North Queensland?
‘The laid back nature of the town. The fact that it’s a tourist town. People come here on holiday to have a good time, locals can’t help but get caught up in that vibe and be relaxed and happy too. But most of all, I love the environment we have. To the west it’s the savannah lands, on the Tablelands we’ve got the waterfalls, the Great Barrier Reef to the east and to the north, the rainforests of Cape Tribulation, not to mention the rugged terrain of Cape York Peninsula. There’s so much, so close. It’s the perfect place for outdoor living.’
We tend to agree with Roddy! Have you had a white water adventure in TNQ? Tell us about it in the comments below – we’d love to hear all about it!